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A healthy vegetarian meal—this Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl is filled with cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, and cheese and drizzled in a simple, homemade tzatziki sauce.
*This post originally appeared in 2015--I've since updated the photos, but it's still the same great recipe!
I realized the other day that I want to start eating more quinoa. That’s not to say that I never eat it, but I feel like I could be eating it a lot more frequently. Perhaps I could replace some of my pasta nights with quinoa nights, which as a result would create more protein-packed and better-for-you recipes.
Let's talk about this easy quinoa bowl
As I mentioned, quinoa is something that I know I need to eat more often but that truthfully, I tend to forget about. My first thoughts when it comes to "sides" are typically pasta and rice. After that comes foods like quinoa, farro and barley. But, I want to change that! If you're in the same boat as me, I think this mediterranean quinoa bowl is a good place to start.
Of course there are more ingredients in this bowl than just quinoa. Besides quinoa, you're going to need:
- grape tomatoes
- red onion
- feta cheese
- tzatziki sauce (the best!)
How to make a mediterranean quinoa bowl
This quinoa bowl starts with--wait for it--quinoa! Let me walk you through things that you'll need to do (and the order in which to do them) in order to make this mediterranean quinoa bowl happen.
Quinoa: add quinoa and water to a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Then, cover the pan with a lid and simmer the quinoa until it's cooked, approximately 15-20 minutes. For this recipe, you can eat the quinoa hot or cold. Personally, I like the mixture of hot and cold. That is, hot quinoa topped with cold vegetables. YUM.
Vegetables: this recipe uses tomatoes, onion and cucumber. While the quinoa is cooking, you'll want to slice the tomatoes in half, dice the onion and then cut the cucumber into fourths.
Feta cheese: arguably the best part of this recipe is the feta cheese. I buy pre-crumbled feta to help keep the mess under control.
Tzatziki sauce: I used my homemade sauce recipe, but you can absolutely use store-bought tzatziki sauce if it's easier (seriously, no judgment--I believe Trader Joe's sells some). I think homemade is always better because you can adjust the flavors as you wish--a little more garlic, a little less lemon--but it's your call. If you own a NutriBullet or a Magic bullet, I recommend using that to make the sauce. If not, your food processor will work just fine.
Honestly, this recipe couldn't be easier. Once the quinoa is cooked, you'll add the chopped veggies, sprinkle it with cheese and drizzle it with the tzatziki sauce. If there are leftovers, you'll simply store them in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.
In short, whether you make your own sauce or not, I hope you give this quinoa bowl a try! If you're looking for another mediterranean-inspired recipe, give this lamb bowl a try.
Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl
for the bowl:
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 cup cucumber sliced
- 1 cup grape tomatoes sliced
- 1/3 cup red onion diced
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese or more
- 2 tbsp tzatziki sauce
for the sauce:
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup cucumber
- Juice from 1/2 lemon
- 2 tsp fresh dill
- 2 mint leaves
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place cooked quinoa in a bowl; stir in the cucumber, tomatoes, onion, and cheese and set aside.
- For the sauce: place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until smooth.
- Drizzle sauce over quinoa and enjoy!